Today I would like to take you with me and tell you the story of how God has given me a love for our country in place of what used to be thoughts of rejection and a the desire to flee the country as soon as possible:
I grew up in “The East of Germany”, a child of the GDR so to speak. The Berlin Wall came down when I was 10 years old. My family had always believed that there would be a reunion of the two countries and this hope was based on a prophetic word Reinhard Bonnke had received before he went to Africa as an evangelist. Of course no one knew what that would look like.
We had already experienced some wonderful charismatic awakenings back then – in the GDR times – and I was used to experiencing God. I made my decision for Jesus fairly early in life and lived in a close relationship with Him.
When the Berlin wall came down I was convinced in my childlike faith that the two countries had finally united. But 20 years later I find it painful to see how deep the wounds of the separation still are, how much prejudice there still is on both sides and that a lot of Heavenly healing blessing still need to flow. A lot of people from The East have gone to The West, because it looked like the land of milk and honey to them. There were promises of better jobs and higher wages. This led to our part of the country bleeding out of the young people, leaving the elderly behind. There were literally regions where all young people had gone, only the older generations were left behind and hopelessness was spreading.
I didn’t really have an eye for all of that for a long time and all I was concerned about was trying to get away from this nation and go somewhere else in the world. I was looking at various options and when foreign visitors where praising the beauty of Germany I always thought to myself: “Its so much nicer where you come from or in these other countries.” I couldn’t find anything beautiful about Germany. I was so ashamed for Germany’s recent history and was dreading to answer “Germany” whenever someone asked me where I was from.
It was my desire that God would give Revival to Germany and people would receive healing in body, soul and spirit. But I couldn’t find any love for my people inside myself.
Grabbing the first opportunity I went to a school of ministry in Canada. I loved it there; the people and their way of living. I experienced a lot of healing in many areas of my being, but the “well protected wall” around my difficult relationship to Germany kept standing tall until we were sent on to an outreach to the USA for one month. We took part in an intercessory conference there and I thought one of the speakers was very crazy. But one of the sentences she said hit bull’s-eye in my heart and this one sentence has thrown my life upside down and changed me. She said: “If you want to see change in your nation or your city, then you have to stand in the gap for it and pray for it before the Father.” Suddenly, it felt like scales were falling off my eyes and I saw the amount of hate for Germany which I unknowingly carried inside of me and that I had never really prayed for my nation. I broke down in front of the altar und cried my eyes out. I asked God to forgive me for my attitude, gave Him all the hate and asked Him to give me love for my homeland.
When the plane was landing in Germany on my trip back from the school of ministry, when I got off the plane and during the whole car trip home, the beauty of Germany amazed me. For the first time I could see this nation with a passionate love and a fire for our country had been awoken on the inside of me.
I had another key moment 2 months after the school of ministry. I had been writing worship songs for years, but the lyrics were always in English. One day I was worshiping Jesus and He said to me: “If you really want to reach your nation through your songs and for them to lead the people into my presence, they need to be in German.” And again it felt like scales falling off my eyes and I saw how deep the rejection for my nation was rooted. I was even renouncing my mother tongue! I repented once again and ask God to forgive me. And within a few short minutes He gave me a really precious song, which has led many people into His presence since then. Wow! God is so good.
A lot of years have gone by since all of this happened and I’m privileged to experience how God touches our country and gives healing. I also had the privilege to serve alongside many men and women of God from all over the world and to make “my” country palatable to them. J God has replaced the hate with a deep love for our nation. He has also given me a special love and a holy zeal for “The East” with the aim to experience him right here and to make Him known in this area. We have experienced Signs and Wonders here and there, but I’m expecting SO much more. I’m looking forward to how this adventure will proceed. God is good and I have the privilege to experience how He is healing hearts, closing wounds and how He is working reconciliation amongst us. Wow!